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by Fred McMillin
The Rhone Revolution
From Rhone Renaissance by Remington Norman... Accepting the view that a vine performs best in a marginal climate--that is, at the lower limit of regular ripening--developing cooler sites with suitable soils has become a passion for many growers in pursuit of quality.
The name of our wine is Io (eye-owe)and the winemaker says, "This debut release of Io's blend of Rhone varieties was produced in the coastal vineyards of Santa Barbara County. The cool marine air and coastal fog means the slow-ripening Rhone varietals are not ready for harvest until mid-October."
The Rest of the Story
Author Norman concludes that the Rhone revolution in California has just begun, and that the trail-blazers are already making some remarkable wine.
This first release of Io is a fine example... 19% Grenache, 17% Mourvedre and 64% Syrah. (Santa Barbara County Syrah acreage: 1980—zero, 1990—32, 1997—187.) Here it is, one of the best California Rhone-grape blends my panel has tasted in recent years.
1996 Io Rhone-varietal blend
The name Io? She was a beautiful Greek goddess. Zeus, the CEO of all Greek gods, fell in love with Io, the goddess. My panel fell in love with Io, the wine.
02/22/00—Native Son, Washington
02/21/00—Crab & Chardonnay
02/16/00—Meet a Master
02/14/00—A Fine Valentine
02/11/00—A Tale of Two Mumms
02/09/00—It Takes a Village
02/08/00—The Flora Aura
02/07/00—The History of Wine
02/04/00—Our Winery of the Century
02/03/00—A No Flaws Shiraz
02/02/00—Monterey On Display
02/01/00—The Ashbrook Outlook
This page created February 2000